Stella King Wilson, 100, a longtime resident of rural Dickens, passed away on July 16, 2018.
She was born on May 21, 1918, on a farm in Logan Township in Clay County, Iowa, the daughter of John Chester and Bessie King.
Stella began her education at a rural country school a mile from her childhood home. She graduated from Dickens High School, where she was class valedictorian, and attended the American Institute of Business in Des Moines. She worked as a bookkeeper at Hart Motors in Spencer and as Deputy Clay County Auditor for three years before her marriage.
She married Donald Wilson on July 11, 1944. When they married, Donald and Stella moved to their farm south of Dickens, where they lived together for over 70 years and where Stella continued to live until she was 99 1/2 years old. In farming, as in so many other ways, they made a good team, as he did the farming, and she kept the farm books.
She was an active member of the Dickens United Methodist Church, where she was the church pianist and organist for over 60 years. During that time, she played for hundreds of church programs, weddings and funerals. She also taught Sunday school and was a member and past officer of the Dickens United Methodist Women.
Stella enjoyed many lifelong friendships and was a member of the same Wednesday afternoon “club” for over 60 years. And for over 50 years, until age forced the group to disband, she and Donald went out on Saturday nights with a group of lifelong friends. She also very much enjoyed living close to and being an active part of the lives of her parents, her brother, and her two sisters.
She devoted much of her time and energy to her children and grandsons, who she loved to be with. To make sure these younger generations knew their ancestry, she researched and documented both sides of the family history. She also made sure they were never without chocolate chip cookies when they came to her house.
Stella was a devoted wife and mother. Left to cherish her memory are her son, Wayne Wilson of Dickens, IA; her daughter Marilyn Wilson of Fresno, CA; and her daughter Dorothy and son-in-law Larry Dowell of Lakewood, IL. She is also survived by her four beloved grandsons (“the boys”) who brought her immense joy throughout her life: Chad Binder and his wife, DeAnna, of San Antonio, TX; Todd Binder and his wife, Meredith, of Bethel, CT; Grant Binder and his wife, Elizabeth, of Burlington, VT; and Ross Binder of Minneapolis, MN.
She also leaves behind by six great-grandchildren: Lucas and Calum Binder (CT); Carmen and Cole Binder (TX); and Hudson and Willa Binder (VT); three step-grandchildren: Sheryl Mark (FL), Brent Dowell (NV) and Greg Dowell (IL); three step great-grandchildren: Zoe, Sophie and Trevor Dowell (IL); and six nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 71 years, Donald; her brother, Cecil King; her sisters, Dora Hansen and Grace Hynes; and many other close family and friends.
Memorials may be directed to the Dickens Fire Department.
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